The PlayStation Vita has been around for years, it has a large library of games and even though there is no official support it is still a format that is receiving games, although slowly. Even with the Nintendo Switch out and offering a handled high end machine, the Vita seems still pushed to the site, but the fact remains, the games and deals are still coming and the fans are still fans and you cannot get away from that. I am glad to be back to look at one of the later releases, Space Overlords, a conversion from a PC game with an interesting premise and theme.
In Space Overlords you are in the far future and giant space robots seem to rule the galaxy, ‘Space Overlords’ if you will. The story is simple really, these Space Overlords have been ruling the galaxy for centuries or whatever and one turns bad so you pick another one to fight it and it goes like that.
When you open the game, I thought to myself wow, this looks quite nice, the graphics were futuristic, moderately detailed and good for the setting. Along with that initially I though the music was quite cool as well, it was to match the setting but was a bit more of an upbeat electronic futuristic tune, epic sounding a bit even.
That’s just the opening screen, it can only get better from there eh? Well, it certainly expands on the idea however this is where the game starts to show what it really is. In story mode, you pick you pick an overlord, a giant robot with different stats for strength, speed, defence and their own ‘super move’, you then move onto a tutorial so you can learn what you are doing. It does its job well too, you know how to play the basics of the game from it.
In the actual gameplay, you see one of the major problems in the game, a recurring frustration, a loading screen, then you are brought to a sort of going to the planet sequence which looks fine but you do nothing then, then another loading screen, it’s about two minutes’ worth, every you start a gameplay session and in the modern era of gaming, that is unforgivable.
Once you are past the loading debacle, you are on the planet and your mission is to destroy everything. This is implemented in gameplay comparably to maybe Pac Man or King of Monsters or a 3D top down version of Rampage. Initially it’s actually a bit fun, you run over the smaller buildings the medium sized buildings you can hit with square or X and the aforementioned that special mover can be used for the bigger buildings.
It’s straight forward from there as in gameplay for the early game, destroy rinse and repeat, the early levels introduce buildings that fight back, these slow you down more than anything else. A few levels further down and the game becomes irrationally hard, as in I start a game and with no explanation I die, once I figure it out I should avoid some giant spheres that are moving throughout the level, I am just annoyed. From there between the loading times, the simple gameplay, the stun moves of the enemies, the lack of explanation of new enemy types. The first impressions of the music and the graphics are now away, the music is repetitive and the graphics are now viewed from afar and now looks like a PlayStation 2 game.
When you add up the mistakes here I cannot believe this has been passed by PlayStation quality control. I mean the problems here cannot be Vita specific, this is on the PlayStation 4 too, although I don’t know how it runs, it looks just the same. Also of interest, in its promotional material it talks about building planets, with that you are basically taking a planet and putting buildings down so other people to destroy your creation, but if the game is terrible in the first place, why bother? This is all online and such too, but again, for me why bother?
In conclusion, the idea was interesting, who doesn’t like destruction? However, I couldn’t recommend this to anyone, the loading times are tortuous, the graphics are mediocre and the gameplay is frustrating and repetitive, avoid this one at all costs!
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation Vita code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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